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Former Marquette County Airport Area of Interest (Negaunee Township, Marquette County)

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Please contact the Site Lead for the most up-to-date status of this site.

EGLE site lead

Steve Harrington, or 906-458-3083.


The former Marquette County Airport was operated by Marquette County from 1937 until 1999, when the facility was sold to a private party who has not operated the site as an airport. The former airport site is located on US Highway 41, approximately three miles northeast of Negaunee and approximately seven miles southwest of Marquette in the north-central portion of Michigan's Upper Peninsula. The former facility was comprised of approximately 849 acres of land.

The former airport is primarily surrounded by undeveloped, sparsely wooded land, with limited commercial or industrial use along the southern edge of the property along US Highway 41. Since the airport closed, residential development has occurred along roads to the north, east and western perimeters of the site.

The former Marquette County Airport received PFAS grant funding in September 2020 from Michigan Department of Transportation. Prior to this grant no investigations into the presence or potential extent of PFAS occurred on this site. Research indicates there may be five areas where AFFF was stored, used, or discharged at the former airport. The five areas include the former fire training area, former fire, and rescue building, two former septic fields, and a possible former wastewater or storm water lagoon.

Past studies of fuel and solvent releases at the former airport property indicate groundwater flows in different directions from this site: toward the south/southeast from the central and eastern portions of the site and toward the west/southwest from the central and western portions of the site. Additional investigation will occur to further delineate groundwater flow directions and determine if PFAS has migrated off-site.

Recent sampling of surface water (drainage ditches and ponded water) on the airport property showed PFAS exceeding water quality standards.& More sampling during a wetter seasonal period will be done to determine potential impacts to off-site water courses.

Content posted June 2021.

Site map

See an aerial view of the location of the area of interest.

Expand the map

Surface water amp

See an aerial view of the surface water of the area of interest.

Expand the map

Drinking water

During May 18 through 20, 2021, 30 residential wells were sampled near the former airport property. PFAS was detected in 8 of the 30 homes. Seven of eight homes with detections were below drinking water criteria. One home had 190 ppt PFOS, which exceeds drinking water criteria (of 16 ppt). Filters were offered to each of the homes with a detection, and bottled water is being delivered to the homeowner whose sample was above criteria. Additional residential well sampling will be conducted in mid-July, and more permanent water supply remedies will be evaluated.

Anticipated activities

Groundwater and soil sampling focused on certain historical airport operations areas (i.e., fire training area, fire and rescue building, two septic fields, possible wastewater or storm water lagoon) will commence in early July 2021. This work is being performed under a grant issued by the Michigan Department of Transportation. Additional residential well sampling will occur in mid-July 2021. This will include sampling at additional residences, as well as repeat sampling at certain residences to affirm results. Further evaluation of surface water bodies and drainage courses on and emanating from the former airport property will be conducted during a wetter seasonal period.